Learn how to use alert targets to integrate alerts and notification systems.

You can use Wavefront alert targets to integrate alerts with many types of notification systems.

You can create alert targets from scratch or use one of the predefined integrations that use alert notification.

  • This page explains how to create and configure different alert targets, including webhooks.

  • Customizing Alert Targets explains how to use webhook templates, variables, and functions to customize alert target behavior.

  • Wavefront provides predefined integrations for several notification systems such as Slack, PagerDuty, HipChat, and VictorOps. Follow the instructions in the built-in integration. Here’s a list of all built-in integrations.

To view and manage alert targets, select Browse > Alert Targets.

Note Our blog post Engineering Tips Series: How Wavefront’s Devops Team Uses Alert Targets to Provide Exceptional Quality of Services to Customers explains how alert targets help Wavefront to keep things running smoothly.

Alert Target Types

Use one of the following alert target types:

  • A webhook alert target is a user-defined HTTP callback that is triggered when an alert changes state. When the state change occurs, Wavefront makes an HTTP POST request to the URL that you configured for the webhook.

  • An Email alert target allows you to specify the attributes of an email that is sent when an alert is triggered. The email can include a POST body with details about the alert.

  • A PargerDuty alert target allows you to specify a PagerDuty key and a POST body to use when an alert is triggered.

The POST data that you can include with each type of alert are passed as a JSON payload.

Prerequisites

If you use a webhook alert target, the webhook url must be publicly accessible.

Creating an Alert Target

The process for creating an alert target is fairly similar for the different targets. A few fields on the Alert Target page change if you change the Type.

  1. Select Browse > Alert Targets.
  2. Click the Create Alert Target button.
  3. From the Type pull-down menu, select the alert target type
  4. Fill in the properties. Certain properties are available only for certain alert target types.
    PropertyDescription
    Name Name of the alert target. Pick a name that is simple and that makes it easy to identify the alert target's purpose.
    Description Description of the alert target. Required.
    Triggers One or more alert state changes that trigger the alert target. The options are:
    • Alert Firing - Trigger when the alert is firing.
    • Alert Status Updated - Trigger when the status of an open alert changes. For example, a new source satisfies the alert condition and joins the set of affected sources.
    • Alert Resolved - Trigger when the alert is resolved.
    • Alert Affected by Maintenance Window - Trigger when the alert is affected by a maintenance window.
    • Alert Snoozed - Trigger when the alert is snoozed.
    • Alert Has No Data - Trigger when the series that is referenced in the alert condition is not reporting data.
    • Alert Has No Data Resolved - Trigger when the series that is referenced in the alert condition starts reporting data after having no data.
    • Alert Entered Maintenance From No Data - Trigger when the series that is referenced in the alert condition is not reporting data and is affected by a maintenance window.
    Webhook Alert Target Type URL REST endpoint of the receiving application, e.g. Slack.
    Content Type Content type of the POST body:
    • application/json
    • text/html
    • text/plain
    • application/x-www-form-urlencoded
    Custom Headers Name and value of one or more HTTP headers to pass in the POST request.
    Email Alert Target Type Email Address List One or more addresses, separated by commas.
    Email Subject Subject of all emails from this alert target.
    Pagerduty Alert Target Type Pagerduty key Key for the PagerDuty application.
    Alert Target POST Body Template Template for a payload that the alert target sends sends in the POST request. Click Template to select a template that is appropriate for the alert target type, and enter the information.
  5. Select Alert Target POST click Template, and select a template type (Default, Slack, VictorOps, or HipChat).
  6. Customize the template as described in the next section.
  7. Click Save to add the alert target and make it visible on the Alert Targets page.

Testing an Alert Target

Test your alert target to ensure that it works properly. To test an alert target, the three dots to the left of the alert target and click Test.

alert target test

Querying Responses of Webhook Alert Targets

Wavefront exposes response codes from webooks alert target calls as metrics:

~alert.webhooks.<webhook_id>.1xx
~alert.webhooks.<webhook_id>.2xx
~alert.webhooks.<webhook_id>.3xx
~alert.webhooks.<webhook_id>.4xx
~alert.webhooks.<webhook_id>.5xx

Note Wavefront does not expose response codes from the simpler alert targets (Email and PagerDuty).

The response codes indicate if a webhook call was successful and if the webhook generated a notification. You can query these metrics to determine if any webhooks are generating a problem response code. The metrics have the point tag name = <webhook_name> so you can determine all the response codes for a particular webhook alert target:

ts(~alert.webhooks.*.*, name=<webhook_name>)

If the response code of the webhook is anything other than 2xx, Wavefront creates an event with the name <webhook_id>.<webhook_name>.<response_code>.

Editing an Alert Target

To edit a alert, click the alert target name in the Alert Targets browser or click the three dots to the left of the alert target and select Edit.

Deleting Alert Targets

You can delete one or more alert targets by checking the checkboxes next to the alert targets and clicking the Trash icon at the top of the Alert Targets page. The trash icon is grayed out if you don’t have permission to delete any of the selected alert targets.

To delete one alert target, use the trash icon or click the three dots to the left of the alert target and select Delete.

Finding an Alert Target ID

Each alert target has a unique ID that the system generates when you first create the alert target. To find the ID:

  1. Click Browse > Alert Targets.
  2. In the Name column, note the ID of the alert target under the description.

    webhook ID

Adding an Alert Target to a Wavefront Alert

To add an alert target to an alert:

  1. Click Alerts, locate the alert on the Alerts page, and click the alert name.
  2. Scroll down to the Targets section.
  3. In the Alert Target field, start typing. A dropdown list appears that contains all available Wavefront alert targets that can be integrated to your alert.
  4. Select the alert target that you want to add, and click Save.